Friday, October 24, 2008

Some software credits

As pESApod approaches his final trial, we wish to list (and thank) the developers of the many tools we used to build our software and communication infrastructure. So, here's what it takes to build a space robot:
  • MATLAB and Simulink
  • SolidWorks, CATIA, ProEngineer WildFire and Ansys, used for mechanical modeling
  • The B.A.T.M.A.N. routing protocol, providing multi-hop communication
  • The Fonera wireless routers (be sure to check out their lively community, both the official Foneros community and the open-source projects like Rome's Ninux)
  • The OpenWrt linux distribution, that powers the Fonera
  • The GNU project, for their GCC compiler and their many tools, used to compile all of our code, from high-level teleoperation station to the low-level FPGA
  • Debian Linux, powering our VIA Epia board
  • The Nios II IDE, based on Eclipse, and of course vim and Geany, our trusted code editors (vim for Alessandro and Geany for me, of course :-)
  • The Quartus IDE by Altera, used to develop on our FPGAs
  • FAME, a fast (but somehow messy) video encoding library
  • libdc1394, used to read data from the high-quality Point Grey cameras
  • The QT 4 toolkit for the high level interface
  • Intel and the MMX instruction set, without which it would not have been possible to encode the video stream in real time.

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